To stir or to swirl...
that is the question. This question has been plaguing espresso lovers since James Hoffman's video revealing the huge disparity in flavor and strength without stirring. Personally, I've always gone back and forth depending on the availability of a tea spoon, or if I just feel like looking fancy. I feel ashamed to say, I never really noticed a huge difference, but it makes sense. I do know some people who prefer to drink their espresso in layers, but there is some science at work here and we're about to go down the rabbit hole. Regardless, Kruve has brought a new line of glassware designed specifically for espresso called PROPEL.
Kruve, if you aren't familiar, are the makers of the ever popular Sifter, and now more recently the EQ Glassware line for drip coffee. If you aren't Theses are the cliff notes for the EQ glasses. They are designed with the science of taste in mind. They are made in different shapes and sizes that increase or decrease certain aspects (i.e. acidity, sweetness, and aroma) of the coffee being drank from them. So the next obvious step is making a model for espresso.
Similarly to the EQ, the PROPEL espresso glassware is designed with science in mind. It enhances the aroma experience with a wider "bulbous" shape, and doubled walled construction to keep it temperature stable for longer. The biggest development, in my opinion, and the one that relates back to James' video, is there are internal fins that are designed to stir the shot while swirling the glass itself. If you're one of those people who likes the layered espresso experience the PROPEL will still work great, just don't swirl the glass. It really sounds like the best of both worlds. Check out the video above to see the PROPEL espresso glassware in action, and hear my final thoughts.
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